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Days at the Coast
Helensburgh Row and Roseneath


The merry month of May, having busked and brightened the earth with buds and blossoms, has resigned her gentle sway, and June, the brilliant and the beautiful, has fallen heir to the golden sceptre of summer. The furrowed fields are waving in verdure^-each passing breeze awakening ripples of glossiest green on the arable leas—while every meadow, every wayside, and every dell, is mantled with bloom and redolent of many mingled odours. The glory of spring has fallen from the apple bough, the pear has doffed her garniture of snowy petals, and “ the beginning of the end,” the rich promise of a Coming autumn, is plainly to be read among the orchard leaves. In the woods, and by the living streams, we can trace by her floral footprints the progress of the year. The snowdrop is now a thing of memory, the fine gold of the primrose is waxing dim, and the

“Daffodil that comes before the swallow dares,
And takes the winds of March with beauty,”

has fallen from her pride of place, and until another spring is born, has ceased to claim the homage of the wanderer’s eye. But ye are not missed, sweet flowers, amid the scented crowds which now rejoice the golden noontide of the summer. The regal rose begins to warm with her blushes the field and the gay parterre; the hawthorn is freckled with foam-like tufts of bloom that make rich the dewy gloamin'; and

“The pansy that looks up Like a thought earth planted,"

is now arrayed in her choicest of purple and gold. In our present wealth we forget, or but faintly remember, the scattered blossoms, few and far between, which were so priceless to us on the skirts of the departing winter. Nor do our musical friends, the birds, seem one whit more grateful. Over the blight they are even now singing as merrily as over the birth of the sweet spring flowers. They are all married couples now, and having feathered their nests and become the heads of promising families, there is no end of their rejoicing. The lark is up at heaven’s purple gate even before the stars have gone to rest, and the merle pipes so deep into the gloamin’ that one could almost fancy he was desirous of breaking the stellar repose, and recalling the midnight twinklers to the sky. And what a blessing to those who can “rejoice in nature’s joy” are the songs of the summer birds! For our own part, we have ever loved these gladsome little wildings of the woods and the fields, and have lent an attentive, and, we trust, an appreciating ear to their melodies. Love is apt to beget song, and, long ago, we penned the following to the

BIRDS OF SCOTLAND.

Oh the birds of bonnie Scotland,
I love them one and all—
The eagle soaring high in pride,
The wren so blythe and small.
I love the cushat in the wood,
The heron by the stream,
The lark that sings the stars asleep,
The merle that wakes their beam.

Oh the birds of dear old Seotland,
I love them every one—
The owl that leaves the tower by night,
The swallow in the sun.
I love the raven on the rock,
The sea-bird on the shore,
The merry chaffinch in the wood,
And the curlew on the moor.

Oh the birds of bonnie Scotland
How lovely are they all!
The oozel by the forest spring
Or lonely waterfall;
The thrush that from the leafless bough
Delights the infant year,
The redbreast wailing sad and lone,
When leaves are falling sear.

Oh for the time when first I roamed
The woodland and the field,
A silent sharer in the joy
Each summer minstrel peal’d.
Their neats I knew them every one.
In bank, or bush, or tree,—
Familiar as a voice of home,
Their every tone of glee.

They tell of birds in other climes
In richest plumage gay,
With gorgeous tints that far outshine
An eastern king’s array.
Strangers to song—more dear to roe
The linnet modest gray,
That pipes among the yellow broom
His wild, heart-witching lay.

More dear than all their shining hues
The wells of glee that lie
In throstle’s matchless mottled breast,
Or merle’s of ebon dye.
And though a lordling’s wealth were mine,
In some far sunny spot,
My heart could never own a home
Where minstrel birds were not

Sweet wilding birds of Scotland,
I loved ye when a boy,
And to my soul your names are link'd
With dreams of vanish'd joy.
And I could wish, when death’s cold hand
Has stilled this heart of mine,
That o’er my last low bed of earth
Might swell your notes divine.

But when we commence talking about birds and flowers we are sure to forget ourselves. Our mission this sweet summer day is an excursion to Helensburgh, Row, and Rofieneath—three of the prettiest localities round the whole Frith. Pleasant to our ear are their several names—pleasant to our eyes their various aspects of beauty—and pleasant, indeed, to our memory are their respective associations with the days of other years. Once more we are bounding over the br6wn waters of the Frith, once more our heart leaps up as the steamer rounds the picturesque promontory of Ardmore—that bosky arm of beauty which the Cardross shore thrusts out into the stream as if to stay its progress. Once again the green lawns, and the wooded glades, and the brown swelling heights of Roseneath swim into our ken, and once again the fair fkce of Helensburgh beams upon us from the sunny shore, and mirrors itself in the quiet waters. We can see as of yore the loungers sauntering lazily along the beach, or chatting in groups at the old-fashioned and incommodious pier—the little children gathering shells upon the sands, or wading in the foamy brine, with here and there a yacht or a fishing-boat dancing over the waves. The picture, with its framework of gently-swelling slopes and dark brown ridges—lofty in parts, but somewhat monotonous in outline —is, on the whole, one of great beauty and cheerfulness.

Helensburgh is a town of comparatively recent origin, and has consequently but few attractions for the disciples of Captain Grose, while it furnishes but a meagre record to the historian. Those who delight in “auld howlet haunted biggins,’ or who revel in the musty reminiscences of tradition, must therefore betake themselves to other and more time-honoured localities. The town was founded, and its ground-plan arranged, by Sir James Colquhoun, in the year 1774. The wife of the said baronet was called Helen, and it was in honour of his spouse that the infant community received its name. Helensburgh is situated on a kind of natural terrace, which slopes gently upward from the sea. It consists principally of a lengthened line of houses, of one and two storeys, fronting the shore, and straggling away in detached cottages embowered in gardens at either end. The front row is intersected at regular intervals with lines of streets running inward from the shore, and communicating with other thoroughfares which run parallel to that in front. Few of the houses have any pretensions to architectural elegance, but the majority of them are whitewashed externally—a circumstance which gives the town a cleanly and attractive aspect, especially when seen from the Frith, or from the opposite shore. Near the centre of the front row or street, the pier at which we land projects into the water. It is, as we have said, a shabby and incommodious affair; in fact, utterly unworthy of the locality, and an eyesore and an annoyance to every visitor. In certain states of the weather it is positively dangerous; and it is to be hoped, for the credit alike of the feudal superior and of the local authorities, that it may soon be numbered with the things that were, and a structure adequate to the traffic be erected in its stead. There are several churches in the town, including one in connection with the Establishment, a Free, an Independent, and an Episcopalian one. There is also a number of schools sufficient for the requirements of the rising generation. Nor need the visitor to Helensburgh dread any deficiency in regard to his intellectual wants or his material necessities. There are book-shops and libraries for the studious, while there are shops in abundance for the sale of clothing and of all the ordinary creature comforts. Some of these would even do credit to the western thoroughfares of Glasgow. When we add that there are several really comfortable hotels and abundant facilities for bathing, we think that enough has been said to show that Helensburgh is a watering-place of more than ordinary attractions.

On previous occasions we have alluded to the services of Henry Bell, the individual who was the first in Europe to apply the power of steam to the propulsion of vessels. Helensburgh has the honour of having been the scene of Bell’s experimental operations. Before his time the attempt had been made by various parties, but in every instance without success, in consequence of which the project seems to have been given up in despair. At this juncture Bell took the matter in hand, and prosecuted it to a successful issue. Having engaged Messrs. Wood of Port-Glasgow to build him a small vessel of some thirty tons burden, he had constructed an engine of three horse power. Under the name of the u Comet ” he finally set it afloat. After several experiments, it was in 1812 placed for purposes of traffic on the Glasgow and Greenock station. Such was the origin of steam navigation,—an invention which has been productive of the most important benefits to the human race, and which in all probability is destined, in the march of improvement, to produce even greater and more glorious consequences than it has yet effected. Mr. Bell continued to reside at Helensburgh till the time of his death, which took place at the Public Baths, of which he had charge, in March 1830, when he had attained the ripe age of sixty-three. His remains were laid in the beautiful and secluded church-yard of the parish. Many attempts have been made to deprive Bell of the fame which he had so nobly earned, but ultimately his claims were universally admitted, and full honour was rendered to his services. He received a handsome pension from the Clyde Trust of Glasgow—which was continued to his wife after Ins decease—while a monument was erected to his memory at Dunglass, and his portrait fills the place of honour in the Hall of the Trust, Robertson Street, Glasgow.

The originator of steam navigation, although resident at Helensburgh at the time of his great and successful experiment, was not a native of the locality. Henry Bell was a native of Torphichen, on the river Avon, near Linlithgow, where he was born on the 7th of April, 1767. His father was a miller at that place, as it is said his ancestors were for several centuries. While yet a boy the future engineer was apprenticed as a stone mason. This occupation, however, he speedily forsook, as we find him in his sixteenth year engaged as a millwright with an uncle, and ultimately in his nineteenth year, working as a shipwright at Borrowstouness. Bell, it appears, laid his plans before the British Government in 1808, and receiving no encouragement, communicated them also to the principal governments on the Continent, and to that of the United States. Robert Fulton, who, in 1807, made a successful experiment in steam navigation on the Hudson, may thus have seen the plans of Bell, and the latter, it is well known, always asserted that such was the case.

The look-out from Helensburgh, and from the heights above it, is one of great beauty. To the left is seen the wood-covered headland of Ardmore, with Port-Glasgow and the heights beyond peeping over its shoulder. In front is the spacious Frith with its passing ships and steamers, and Greenock, Gourock, and their swelling hills in the background, while Roseneath, that thing of beauty, with the opening of the Gareloch, presents a charming picture to the right.

All that is beautiful, indeed, of earth, or sea, or sky, mar be said to be congregated around this favoured spot, and rejoices the hearts of its summer visitants.

We have glanced at the brief history of Helensburgh, and at the splendid scenery which it commands in a seaward point of view, but this favourite watering-place has landward beauties as well. By a pleasant inland route the resident in this locality can drop down upon Lochlomond through the sublime but dreary portal of Glenfruin, the glen of sorrow—that huge and blood-stained gap in which the Macgregors and the Colquhouns came into deadly collision, and wherein the latter were so fearfully worsted. A dark day for the Laird of Luss was that in which he grappled with the Macgregor—when the flower of his clan was laid low, and his flocks and his herds were carried away; but darker and more dreary was it subsequently for the victors, when they were rendered outcasts on the face of their native land, and their very name was made a byword and a reproach. Whether the Macgregors were really the sinners they are said to have been, or whether they were not more sinned against than sinning, we will not pretend to say; but this we know, that while their name as landlords of the soil has passed away, that of the Colquhouns has grown in strength and influence. Bravery and honesty are often driven to the wall, while timidity and cunning assume the ascendant. Sir James Colquhoun is now lord of Helensburgh and all the lands around, while those against whom neither his predecessors nor the predecessors of his clan could in combat hold their own, have been scattered to the four winds of heaven. It has been said that there is as much to be made by watching as by praying, and certainly the history of our now prosperous Scottish families shows that there is more to be made by time-serving and diplomacy than by an honest adherence to the right. Be that as it may, however, there can be no doubt that every sojourner in Helensburgh will be well repaid for the few hours he bestows on a visit to Glenfruin, and through it to Luss and the peerless Loch* lomond—the queen of Scottish lakes. Another favourite walk with the Helensburgh people is that along the Cardross shore towards Ardmore, and, on the brow of the hill, to the ancient Castle of Kilmahew. Every step in this direction presents, as it were, a new picture of landscape loveliness.

Our present course, however, is in the opposite direction. We are desirous of getting into the jaws of the Gareloch, and immediately after leaving the straggling but beautiful outskirts of Helensburgh, that loch becomes clearly defined. On the one hand we have the green wooded slopes of Ardincaple, and on the other, the bosky promontory of Roseneath —both possessions of the Argyle family. Ardincaple is a stately mansion of the old Scottish or baronial style, and from time to time has Ijeen used as the residence of the Duchesses-Dowager of the M‘Callum Mores. Although in the main of modern, or at least of comparatively modern origin, one portion of the structure is said to have been erected so early as the twelfth century. At that period the estates of the Argyle family were of much more limited extent than they are now; but step by step they have crept from their native fastnesses towards the low country, until now a large portion of the shores of Clyde and of the neighbouring lochs has fallen into their hands. There is an old Scottish saying—

“From the greed of the Campbells,
The ire of the Drummonds,’’

and certain other family qualifications,

“Lord deliver us.”

In the case of the Campbells, at all events, the deliverance seems not to have come, as the present Duke—although said to be one of the poorest of his class—possesses an extent of territory which would have overwhelmed some of the older chieftains who held sway under the banner of the “Boar’s head.” Ardincaple, however, is a lovely spot— lovely in itself, with its green lawns, its swelling ridges, and its stately old woods—and lovely more especially in the glorions prospects of land and sea which it commands. The proudest dowager in all the land might well be proud of such a noble residence. The fierce M‘Aulay’s who once called it their home, must have shed many a bitter tear when the “greed of the Campbells ” deprived them of this their ancient and beautiful patrimony.

Passing a number of other, but less imposing and less ancient domiciles, we arrive at the Row—one of the sweetest, one of the cosiest nooks of the Clyde. At this place a long, narrow, and wedge-shaped point of land stretches out into the water, and with a similar, but lesser projection from the opposite shore, threatens to landlock the lovely Gareloch. Fortunately, even at lowest tides, the junction is far from complete, and the river steamers have ample scope and verge enough to pass to and fro. Owing to the contracted nature of the passage, however, the current at certain states of the tide is exceedingly rapid, a circumstance which swimmers have sometimes learned to their cost. The point alluded to has given name to the locality—the Celtic name of Rhue signifying a projecting point or promontory. A glance at the map of Scotland and the neighbouring islands will show how frequently the term is applied to similar earthy or rocky projections into the water. On the ocean-fretted shores of Mull, for instance, we have rows or rhues innumerable, but generally accompanied by some descriptive adjective to indicate their respective peculiarities. Thus, one is called the green or grassy rhue or point, another the sea-fowl rhue or point, and a third the stormy point, according to their most striking natural features. Celtic names are invariably self-descriptive, as the designation of innumerable places even in lowland Scotland abundantly testify. Centuries ago the Celtic population were expelled from these districts; and still in the proper names of places the memory of the ol<J inhabitants—“footprints on the sands of time”—remain indelibly impressed.

But it is with the artificial, rather than with the natural or physical features of the Row proper that we have at present to deal. The swelling heights above the Row form at this point something like an obtuse angle, the one line approaching from Helensburgh in an easterly direction, and the other striking away towards the north or north-west. On either shoulder of the angle thus formed nestles a group of elegant cottages, and villas, and mansions, embowered in gardens and shrubbery, with delicious walks intervening, and with shady nooks, that seem

“For talking age or whispering lovers made;"

and where, as we are wandering in this lovely day of June, an hundred odours scent the winds of noon, and every grove is redolent of song. The eye also rejoices in a shadowy profusion of green, while the laburnum waves in the breeze her ringlets of floral gold, and on the lilac you scarce can see the leaves for flowers. Peeping through the gateways as we pass, the rose and rhododendron are all ablush—"alike, but oh how different!”—the one “breathing airs of heaven,” the other, so far as odour is concerned, stale, flat, and unprofitable. How like are the blossoms of the rose and those of the rhododendron! but call the latter a rose and it would not smell so sweet. There is a moral in the contrast, but we need not stay to extract it. Our sentimental readers, take our word for it, will be apt enough to do that for themselves. What we meant to say was that a sweeter, a sunnier, a leafier, or a more bloomy spot exists not on the Clyde— and that is saying a great deal—than this same scattered community of the Row.

And all this time we have not said a single word about the principal feature of Row—namely, its elegant new kirk. This structure, with its beautiful spire towering gracefully above its girdle of time-honoured planes, has a delightful effect, whether seen from the deck of the passing steamer, or as we see it now from the silent field of graves by which it is so appropriately surrounded. Here the rude forefathers, hot only of the village, for until recently it was of the tiniest dimensions, but of the parish, which is somewhat of the widest, sleep the sleep which knows no breaking. As wo scan the humble headstones—and humility is not the characteristic of all—we think that a sweeter spot was never selected for the last low bed of departed mortality. In their lives these silent sleepers dwelt amidst the beautiful, and the beautiful still encircles their place of rest. We could dream of such a place to sleep the long sleep, but what availeth beauty to the cold dull eye of death? Be it amidst the din of the city, or in the sweetest of rural solitudes, there is no fear of disturbance when once the "golden bowl” is shivered. There are but few noticeable names in the kirkyard of Row, and foremost among these is that of Henry Bell, to whom a statue has been erected within the shadow of the parish kirk. Helensburgh, although now a much more populous and important locality, is but an offshoot of Row, and to Row Helensburgh consigned the ashes of her most famous son, The old church, although now superseded by its more stately successor as a place of worship, still retains its position in the green enclosure. Originally it must have been but a sorry effort of Presbyterian architecture, and now that it has waxed old and somewhat dilapidated, it contributes nothing to the picturesqueness of the spot. Indeed, its removal would be a benefit to the landscape, as it mars the effect of the new church, which is situated immediately in its rear. It may be interesting as an ecclesiastical landmark, however, as it was at this place that what is called the 44Row Heresy” originated, and it was probably within the plain, barn-like walls of this ghostly old structure that it was first promulgated. Of the merits or demerits of the heresy alluded to we are ashamed to say we know nothing, and we have consequently no great regard for the source from which it emanated, and would not at all regret the immediate removal of an edifice which can now only be considered a cumberer of the ground.

Beautiful as Row may be in herself, she is rendered still more beautiful by the kindred things of beauty by which she is surrounded—just as a lovely girl seems to become more lovely when she is girt by a bevy of her blooming compeers. On the opposite side of the opening loch—only about half-a-mile in width—are the charming domains of Roseneath, with their stately castle, their evergreen lawns and fairy beaches, their wooded knolls and their swelling heights of dreariest moorland—a congregation in miniature of all that rejoices the poet’s or the painter’s vision. To the left is seen a spacious sweep of the Clyde, with its gallant garniture of ships at rest or in motion upon its breast, and its towns, villages, and mansions, smiling upon its shores, and its bold boundary of hills swelling to the very blue of the summer sky. To the right lies the Gareloch, with its cincture of copse-covered and brown moorish ridges, and its clusters of snowy cottages nestling quietly along the shore. Every loophole of this lovely retreat, indeed, commands a landscape privilege of an ever varying and exceeding beauty.

But our day advances, and o’er the sunny ripples of the intervening waters we must find our way to what Sir Walter Scott, in the Heart of Mid-Lothian, calls the “Island of Roseneath.” In common parlance, we are aware that this exquisite promontory is also occasionally dubbed the “isle,” but the great and gloriously gifted author of Waver ley was evidently astray in his geographical notions of Roseneath. In the novel alluded to in describing the spot, he says, “The islands in the Frith of Clyde, which the daily passage of so many smoke-pennoned steamboats now renders so available, were in our fathers’ times secluded spots, frequented by no travellers, and few visitants of any kind. They are of exquisite but varied beauty. Arran, a mountain region or Alpine island, abounds with the grandest and most romantic scenery. Bute is of a softer and more woodland character. The Cumbraes, as if to exhibit a contrast to both, are green, level, and bare neither green, level, nor bare, Sir Walter, say we, forming the links of a sort of natural bar, which is drawn along the mouth of the Frith, leaving large intervals, however, of ocean. Roseneath, a smaller isle, lies much higher up the Frith and towards its western shore, near the opening of the loch called the Gareloch, and not far from Loch Long and Loch Seant, or the Holy Loch, which wind from the mountains of the Western Highlands to join the estuary of the Clyde.” Such is the description of Roseneath as delineated by the most charming of Scottish pens—a description which abundantly shows that Sir Walter was never on the spot, or that if he was, his memory must have played him a sad trick. We can well forgive an error, however, whent along with it, we have the name of Jeanie Deans—that most truthful and consistent of the author’s female creations— associated with the scenery of the Clyde. On returning from her noble and completely successful pilgrimage to London on behalf of her unhappy sister, Jeanie, by the request of his Grace of Argyle, was brought to Roseneath; and every one who has read the novel must remember the touching scene which occurred on her unexpected meeting with her father on the beach adjacent to the ducal residence. Even now, as we approach the spot, we could embody to our mind’s eye the very scene. As the boat touches the landing-place we can see Jeanie, with a sweet surprise depicted on her comely countenance, and, to borrow from the book, "douce David Deans” himself, in his best light-blue Sunday’s coat with broad metal buttons, and waistcoat and breeches of the same, his strong gramashes or leggins of thick gray cloth; the very copper buckles; broad Lowland blue bonnet thrown back as he lifted his eyes to Heaven in speechless gratitude; the gray locks that straggled from beneath it down his weather-beaten “haffets;” the bald and furrowed forehead; the clear blue eye that, undimmed by years, gleamed bright and pale from under its shaggy gray pent-house; the features, usually so stern and stoical, now melted into the expression of rapturous joy, affection, and gratitude—were all those of David Deans, as he exclaimed, 44 Jeanie—my ain Jeanie—my best, my most dutiful bairn; the Lord of Israel be thy Father, for I am hardly worthy of thee I Thou hast redeemed our captivity—brought back the honour of our house. Bless thee, my bairn, with mercies promised and purchased.”

Is not this, with Roseneath as the scene, a noble subject for the painter? Scott himself seems to have been especially pleased with his own pen and ink delineation, and says, u Should I ever again see my friends Wilkie or Allan, I will try to borrow or steal from them a sketch of this very scene.” The subject, however, is still virgin. Let our artists look to it.

Roseneath, the beautiful promontory on which we are now supposed to be landed, is said to have derived its name from a phrase in the British language—Roseneath signifying "the bare or naked peninsula.” Whatever descriptive truth this name may have originally possessed, we know not, but assuredly it is anything but appropriate at the present day, when a large proportion of the lands are mantled with copsewood and timber, and can boast of numerous sylvan giants of extraordinary dimensions. Two of these—a pair of silver firs near the site of the old castle—are perhaps the noblest of the species in Scotland; and to any one who can appreciate forest stateliness and grace, they would of themselves abundantly repay a pilgrimage to the locality. These two monarchs of the wood are nearly of a size, their circumference five feet from the ground being about nineteen feet. Par nobile fratrum I There is also an avenue of yews near the site of the old church, which excites universal admiration. But why mention particular instances where there is such a glorious expanse of woodland and coppice, and where the visitor might spend the long summer day in rambling, nor ever leave his canopy of green?

The lands of Roseneath belonged originally to the family of Lennox. For some act of treason committed in 1489 they were forfeited to the Crown, and shortly thereafter were bestowed—for what service is not known—upon Colin, first Earl of Argyle. The M‘Callum Mores have the knack of keeping what they acquire, and the estate has ever since remained in possession of the family, with whom it seems to have been always a favourite place of resort. The original residence, Easter House, was situated about a mile to the north-west of the present castle, which lies near the extremity of the peninsula, upon a beautiful natural terrace overlooking the Clyde and the opening of the Gareloch. This structure, although presenting an imposing appearance from the water and the adjacent shores, is somewhat incongruous in style, being a combination of the Greek and the castellated Gothic. It was erected in 1803 from a design by J. Bononi of London. One of the principal fronts faces the north with a magnificent portico; another of less imposing appearance looks towards the south. On the summit of the edifice is a circular tower, which is said to command a magnificent range of scenery— including, of course, the leading features of the neighbouring Frith and those of the adjacent lake. Couched upon its own verdant lawn, and half-screened from view by its lovely environment of woods and gardens, this is indeed one of the most enviable residenoes which it is possible to conceive.

The village of Roseneath, with its neat little Gothic church of recent erection, is scattered along the margin of the Gareloch, of which and of the adjacent heights it commands a delightful series of prospects. Some of the villas are extremely elegant, and with their girdles of shrubbery and garden ground, are the veriest pictures of loveliness and seclusion. Roseneath has no history of particular moment. Like so many other localities, she ha3 certain traditions of Wallace—a precipitous rock north of the castle being called the Wallace’s Leap.” We have it also on the authority of Blind Harry, that the great Scottish hero resided here on one occasion. During the “killing times” of Scottish persecution, it is said that many of the Covenanters found refuge here under the wing of the Argyle, and it is even said that Balfour of Burley—the assassin of Archbishop Sharpe— found a safe shelter in this quiet spot, and under an assumed name here ended his days m peace.

It was formerly alleged that the soil of Roseneath was inimical to the existence of rats, and that these vermin died immediately on being brought into the peninsula. So strong was this impression, that an adventurous West Indian planter, whose estate was infested by rats, actually took out a shipload of the sacred soil for the purpose of having them extirpated. The experiment, we regret to say, proved a signal failure, and at the present day, whatever may have been the case in former times, rats “ live, move, and have their being in the parish of Roseneath as abundantly as elsewhere. In stating this fact, the old minister of Roseneath consoled himself by the reflection that if the soil had possessed the virtue ascribed to it, he would probably have had no parish, as the entire peninsula would in all likelihood have been shipped away for the destruction of rats in less favoured localities.

On the opposite shore of the Peninsula from Roseneath lies the modern watering-place of Kilcreggan, a long straggling line of cottages and villas, extending even into the mouth of Lochlong. The locality—which commands an ample sweep of the Frith and of the opposite shore, with its towns and villages in the foreground, and its brown hills beyond—is said to have derived its name from a saint or holy man named Creggan, who is said to have had a cell or chapel in the vicinity. Between Roseneath and Kilcreggan there is a fine road passing through a succession of charming landscapes. As we pass along this line of beauty to catch the steamer at the neat wharf of Kilcreggan, the woods and fields are rejoicing in the fresh green livery of June, the wayside flowers are all arrayed in their richest colours and rejoicing in the sun, while the birds in number numberless, are thrilling the summer air with their woodnotes wild. Let those who would enjoy a day of solitude, and of freshest natural beauty, those who can rejoice as we have done, in nature’s joy, tread in our footsteps, and indulge in a ramble amidst the scenery of sweet Roseneath.

Note.—As a memorial of the infancy of steam navigation, the following advertisement inserted by Henry Bell in the newspapers of the period, may not be considered uninteresting:—

“Steam Passage-boat, The Comet, between Glasgow, Greenock, and Helensburgh, for Passengers only.

“The Subscriber having, at much expense, fitted up a handsome vessel to ply upon the River Clyde, between Glasgow and Greenock—to sail by the power of wind, air, and steam—he intends that the vessel shall leave the Broomielaw on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, about mid-day, or at such hour thereafter as may answer from the state of the tide—and to leave Greenock on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, in the morning, to suit the tide. The elegance, comfort, safety, and speed of this vessel require only to be proved, to meet the approbation of the public; and the proprietor is determined to do everything ki his power to merit public encouragement. The terms are for the present fixed at 4s. for the best cabin, and 3s. the second; but, beyond these rates, nothing is to be allowed to servants, or any other person employed about the vessel The subscriber continues his establishment at Helensburgh Baths, the same as for years past, and a vessel will be in readiness to convey passengers in the Comkt from Greenock to Helensburgh.—Passengers by the Comet will receive information of the hours of sailing, by applying at Mr. Houston's Office, Broomielaw; or Mr. Thomas Blackney’s, East Quay Head, Greenock.

“Henry Bell.

“Helensburgh, 5th August, 1812."


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